Some Tips on Locating Old Gas Engine, Tractor and Steam Engine Magazines

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Courtesy of Marvin E. Green, Boyden, Iowa 51234.
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R.D. 4, Box 158, Greensburg, Pa. 15601

I don’t know how much interest there is in locating
magazines on gas engines, tractors, and steam engines which may not
have been published for years but I have seen an occasional plea
from time to time in the ‘WANTED’ section of GEM for a copy
of some old magazine. Although I don’t know a whole lot about
engines, I can contribute some suggestions on how to obtain a copy
of a specific article in an old magazine — if you know the name of
the magazine, year, month of issue — and preferably the title and
page of the article.

Perhaps many readers are not aware that many old magazines are
still kept at some libraries throughout the nation. Generally,
these are the larger public and and university libraries but a few
can be found in smaller libraries. Fortunately, some of these
libraries have their holdings listed in nationally distributed

Let’s suppose you know the name of a magazine, the year, and
issue in which an interesting article appeared. Perhaps you’ve
made a plea for a copy in GEM with no success. Maybe some other
reader has an original issue but has no way of making you a copy
and hesitates to lend it by mail — you can’t really blame him
since he doesn’t know you from Adam!

Anyway, to find out some of the libraries that have original
issues, go to your library and ask for THE UNION LIST OF SERIALS IN
set of books which lists alphabetically nearly all magazines which
were ever printed. Warning: books, catalogs, and manufacturers
instruction manuals are not listed!

If your library does not have a copy of this ‘Union
List,’ tell your librarian what magazine and issue you want to
look up and she can probably get the information for you from some
other library which does have a ‘Union List.’

After the name of each magazine in the ‘Union List,’ it
will state: (1) when it was published, (2) where it was published,
(3) any changes in the name of the magazine which occurred, and (4)
other magazines with which it merged. Immediately below this
information, there is a coded list of libraries which have original
issues and what issues they have. The code system, shown in the
front of each volume, indicates whether they will make copies of
articles. They generally will, but it does not say for how much. If
the code confuses you, don’t feel embarrassed to ask your
librarian for help. I’ve personally never met a librarian who
was not willing to help me, regardless of how ridiculous my request
sounded to them.

If you happen to live near a library which has some old
magazines which you just want to browse through, try to give the
library some advance notice when you will be there and ask them to
set aside a few issues for you. Many times, old magazines have to
be dug out of a storage house which may not be in the same building
as the library. Don’t worry about the inconvenience —
that’s what the magazines are kept there for in the first

I’ve listed below a few magazines which might be interesting
and the years they were published. The number in parenthesis before
the name of the magazine indicates how many libraries are listed in
the ‘Union List’ as having at least some original issues.
The city after the dates is the place of publication.

Below the title of each magazine are some other names which the
magazine was called or with whom they merged.

I would appreciate any reader who knows of other interesting
magazines on old gas engines, tractors, and steam traction engines
which might be of interest to drop me a line. Please send me the
name of the magazine and the type of articles and information
contained in it.

Perhaps it would be a good idea if readers who know of a
magazine and issue which describes a specific piece of equipment to
write such information to GEM so that we all might know about it.
Then, using the method of locating original issues I’ve
described, we can save the contributor the cost and time of making
copies or the embarrassment of declining to risk lending his own
copy by mail.

OK now, I’ve given some tips on how to find the magazines.
Now somebody tell me the name and issue of a magazine that gives
some information on a Franklin Valveless engine — or a New Way
engine — or an Ireland shingle mill — or a-;

(24) American Farm Equipment 1892-1932 Waverly, Iowa Also known
as American Thresherman

(34) Farm Implement News 1882-1958 absorbed by Implement and

(23) Farm Equipment Dealer 1903-1927 St. Joseph, Mich. Gas Power
1903-1918 Power Farming Dealer 1918-1923

(15) Gas and Oil Power 1905- London, England Gas and Oil Engine
Record 1905-1907

(6) Gas Energy 1906-1917 New York, N.Y.

(3) Gas Engine and Farm Power Association 1907-1919 Lakemont,
N.Y. National Gas Engine Association

(1) Gas Engine Age 1906-1917 Detroit, Mich.

(16) Implement and Tractor 1876-Kansas City, Mo.

Implement and Farm Journal 1876-1892

Implement Trade Journal 1893-1902 Weekly Implement Trade Journal

Implement and Tractor Trade Journal 1916-1925

Implement and Hardware Trade Journal 1925-1929

Implement and Tractor Trade Journal 1929-1935

(8) Implement and Tractor Age 1892-1922 Phila., Pa. Springfield,
Ohio Implement Age 1892-1922

(7) Northwest Farm Equipment Journal 1887- Minneapolis,

Farm Implements 1887-1918

Farm Implements and Tractors 1918-1926 (42) Oil Field
Engineering 1898-1923 Cincinnati, Ohio

Gas Engine 1892-1921

(70) Successful Farming 1902- Des Moines, Iowa

(20) Tractor and Gas Engine Review 1908-1025 Madison, Wise.

Gas Review 1908-1917 merged into American Thresherman, then
American Farm Equipment

(1) Tractor and Implement Topics 1917-1920 New York, N.Y.

Tractor and Trailer 1917-1920 (15) Tractor Farming 1916-1932
Chicago, III.

(7) Tractor World 1918-1923 Paw-tucket, R.I. merged into Motor

Jack Wiltman of Le Mars and Jack Kadinger of Sioux Falls who run
the two engines at Orange City, Iowa, on the hundredth anniversary.
The owner. Doc Newman, had a tent one block long and street wide
full of old antique machinery.

18 hp. Fuller & Johnson owned by Mr. Herron of Newell, Iowa
– ‘The Bee Man.’ It came from Wisconsin.

Hart Parr owned by Doc Newman and driven by Leo Eason, the
former owner in Orange City Parade. There was a 40-inch Red River
Thresher behind it.

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